Erich Radke, 87, of Cromwell, passed away peacefully at Pilgrim Manor in Cromwell on Saturday, March 20, 2021. He was born on April 14, 1933 in Somsiory, Germany, the son of the late Justine (Heise) Radke and Robert Radke. Besides his parents, Erich was predeceased by his two sisters, Ida (Radke) Kroll and Erika Radke along with his brother, Emmrich Radke.
Erich grew up in Germany and in his youth enjoyed sports and played soccer and hockey. He became the man of the family at 12 years old when his father was killed in action during the war and always kept a watchful eye on his mother and siblings going forward. As a young man Erich worked on oil rigs in Germany before immigrating to the United States in 1956. In 1957, his young bride, Gertrud (Vicinus) Radke, also immigrated from Germany and joined him in the United States. Erich is survived by his loving wife Gertrud; they were married for 64 years.
Erich and Gertrud lived in Cromwell where they built a life together and raised three children. Erich is survived by his son Oliver Radke and wife Lori (Ross) Radke of Bedford, NH, daughter Judith (Radke) Coco and husband Peter Coco of Portland, CT, and son Mark Radke and wife Darlene (Cole) Radke of Cromwell, CT. Erich is survived by three grandchildren Alexander Radke of Austin, TX, Taylor Radke and Jessica Radke of Bedford, NH. Erich is also survived by his sister, Olga Radke of Wethersfield, CT along with a niece and two nephews.
Erich was a welder by trade and worked for several companies until his retirement in 1998. In his spare time, Erich liked to fish, play chess and cards. Family outings to the beach for fishing and swimming are fondly remembered as weekly events in the summer. Erich also had a good sense of humor and loved spending time with family and friends enjoying a good meal. Erich was well known for grilling up the best steaks around and enjoying them with friends and family, having a good hardy laugh along with a cold beer. These are the memories that sustain the family in this time of sorrow.
A private service will be held for the immediate family. A celebration of life service will be announced and held in the early fall when Covid restrictions have been lifted and it is safe to gather.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association or a charity of choice. To share memories or send condolences to the family, please visit www.doolittlefuneralservice.com
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